Some of white paper’s elements open way for discussion — EU's Barnier

Blanche Robertson
July 22, 2018

"Can the prime minister inform the House at what point it was decided that Brexit means Remain?"

Trading companies that have no experience in commerce with third countries - non-EU members - should learn about the procedures.

"It is not too late to save Brexit", Johnson said in his speech.

Britain has already said it would legislate to ensure that cross-border financial contracts like derivatives and insurance policies can still be serviced after March, but the European Union has so far said it was up to the private sector to take such action. "We have time in these negotiations, we have changed tack once and we can do so again", he told the House of Commons as his supporters crowded the nearby benches to show support. Furthermore we have to step up our work on preparedness in case we don't find a deal. His French counterpart, Nathalie Loiseau, offered a similar diagnosis: "Nobody wants it, but it is our responsibility to prepare for a Brexit without agreement". Several other junior ministers have also resigned.

According to the Yorkshire Post, he said he had been contacted by members and voters in his constituency about the Prime Minister's Chequers plan for a "common rulebook" with the European Union on goods.

"It is absolute nonsense to imagine, as I fear some of my colleagues do, that we can somehow afford to make a botched treaty now and then break and reset the bone later on", said Johnson. "But we need an operational backstop now in the Withdrawal Agreement, not later".

May has put forward a Brexit plan, the so-called white paper negotiated with her cabinet at Chequers two weeks ago, that would foresee a free trade deal on goods with the European Union, but failed to address the Irish border issue directly. It has now also been criticised by May's rebel hardline Brexiteer Conservative MPs.

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While speaking to reporters ahead of his meeting with the new Brexit secretary Dominic Raab on Thursday, Barnier stated that they needed to finalize the agreement and that they were not there yet.

Mr Raab said that he was looking forward to discussing the Government's white paper and getting stuck in "with renewed energy, vigour and vim". May's white paper indicates Britain is seeking single market privileges for industrial and agricultural goods alone.

However, he admitted that "we need to check if the proposals laid out in the White Paper are compatible with the principles set out in March by the EU's 27 leaders".

Former EU trade official Peter Guilford told me this week he believes the Brussels rumours that Brexit talks will go down to the wire this autumn and it would only be when the Commission "saw the whites of United Kingdom negotiators' eyes" that they would start making their own compromises instead of always hammering the United Kingdom for them.

"We are very concerned".

"I would simply say that Brexit can not be and will not be a justification for creating more bureaucracy", he said.

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